AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch SMAP on a Delta II 7320 rocket from Vandenberg AFB, CA
scheduled for:
31 Jan 15 14:22:00 GMT
31 Jan 15 6:22:00 PST
31 Jan 15 9:22:00 Eastern

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MESSENGER Gets Small Reprieve Prior to End of Mission in 2015

Artist’s impression of MESSENGER in orbit around Mercury. Following a highly successful decade-long mission, the spacecraft will eventually face its demise while crashing on Mercury’s surface, sometime next spring. Image Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington

The coming of the New Year is a time for celebration and reflection on […]

Tilted Aquaplanets Might Still be Habitable, Study Suggests

Artist’s conception of an ocean-covered aquaplanet. Image Credit: Christine Daniloff/MIT

With so many exoplanets now being discovered on a regular basis by astronomers, the focus has turned to what number of them might be habitable for some kind of life. For life as we know it at least, that depends on a number of […]

Rosetta Observations Spark Debate on Origin of Earth's Water

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on 20 November 2014. This mosaic comprises four individual NAVCAM images taken from 30.8 km from the centre of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on 20 November 2014. Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0

Comets? Asteroids? Or what?

One of the most basic questions driving Astronomy and Space Exploration is: Where did the water […]

Stars Above and Earth Below: NASA's Proposed New Airship Competition Good for Science

Artist’s conception of a new high-altitude NASA airship which could make science observations of both the Earth below and stars above. Image Credit: Mike Hughes (Eagre Interactive)/Keck Institute for Space Studies

Airships are a unique form of transportation—giant, balloon-like, lighter-than-air vehicles which can stay aloft for extended periods of time. Their design makes them […]

NASA's Van Allen Probes Detect Life-Protective Electron Barrier Inside Earth's Radiation Belts

A visualization of the Earth’s radiation belts, based on data that were gathered by NASA’s twin Van Allen probes. The Earth is seen to be surrounded by the plasmapause (blue-green area) and the two main radiation belts further out (multi-color area). The boundary between the plasmapause and the inner edge of the outer belt […]

NASA's SMAP Mission Arrives at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Begins Final Preparations for Early 2015 Launch

Scheduled for launch in early 2015, NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive, or SMAP mission, will track Earth’s water into one of its last hiding places: the soil. SMAP soil moisture data will, among other things, aid in predictions of agricultural productivity, weather and climate. Image Credit: NASA

“Follow the water”: This theme has driven […]

Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) Spacecraft to Fly Through Earth’s Magnetic Reconnection Events for First 3-D Maps—NASA Administrator Bolden Visit

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden poses with the agency’s Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft, mission personnel, Goddard Center Director Chris Scolese, and NASA Associate Administrator John Grunsfeld, during a visit to the cleanroom at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., on May 12, 2014. Credit: Ken Kremer- kenkremer.com

NASA GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER, MD […]

'We Have Arrived': The Marvels of Apollo 10 (Part 3)

Mission controllers anxiously watch the “transposition and docking” of lunar module Snoopy, four hours into the Apollo 10 mission. Photo Credit: NASA

Four hours after a bone-jarring launch from Cape Kennedy and an equally rattling ride through Trans-Lunar Injection, the crew of Apollo 10 were finally on their way to the Moon on the […]

'We Didn’t Know the Questions': The Trials of Apollo 10 (Part 2)

 

Snoopy and Charlie Brown were everywhere in days surrounding Apollo 10. Photo Credit: NASA

Snoopy, the little black-and-white dog from the “Peanuts” comic strip, was everywhere in the days and hours leading up to the launch of Apollo 10. Forty-five years ago this week, he had become the mascot for a mission which […]

'Tumbling End Over End': The Trauma of Gemini VIII (Part 2)

Dave Scott (left) and Neil Armstrong breathe the fresh air of Earth as the hatches of Gemini VIII are opened after splashdown. Photo Credit: NASA

Forty-eight years ago today, Gemini VIII astronauts Neil Armstrong and Dave Scott accomplished a key goal in America’s bid to land a man on the Moon by successfully rendezvousing […]